TexShare Electronic Information WG Minutes
February 06, 2003

The discussion was not in agenda order, but we covered most of the items during the meeting. The published agenda is repeated at the end of the comments if you wish to refer to it.

There is $6,923,220.95 in the budget for databases. Peggy Rudd visited with the committee and said this amount can be spent for FY04 or perhaps it can be spread over 26 months to extend databases through August 31, 2005. (The existing database subscriptions run from July1-June 30) There is a clause in the legislation that says funds can be prepaid if it saves the state money. TSLAC is trying to verify whether the database funds can be spent for prepaid services, and Rudd said they would know soon - in a couple of weeks. The determination was not made about whether to stretch the money over two years or to use it for FY04 only, but the majority of EIWG members preferred to use the funds for FY04. A decision will be made when all the facts are known.

Decisions made at this meeting include:

 The only firm decision that committee made was to recommend that we end funding that supports academic libraries' access to various Ovid databases.TexShare will not subsidize TexSelect products. More specifically, some libraries are subscribing to MLA and CINAHL databases from OVID. The subscribing members pay the full amount of the subscription among themselves and there is no cost to TexShare for the database subscriptions. However, in addition to the database costs, OVID charges for ports to access these databases. In the past, TexShare has paid the port charges. The decision was made to discontinue this practice for any TexSelect databases. The amount saved is $106,246.08 in the current budget. We will also investigate dropping access to some duplicate copies of NetLibrary titles that are no longer up to date. Savings from this will probably be minimal.

 TDNet and TDNet hosting will not be cut. This product is seen as a tool to help libraries manage the subscriptions in the databases to which we subscribe. The cost for purchasing TDNet and hosting the database is only $14,500.

 NetLibrary books will be selected after the databases and the time lines are firm. EIWG made protecting the databases the highest priority.

 Some dated duplicate copies of ebooks will be dropped from netLibrary. TexShare purchases multiple copies of some ebooks. We no longer need duplicate copies of computer books, books on technology and medical books that are more than three years old. We will keep one original copy and cancel the duplicate copies as the books become dated. This may not be the case for literature and history books. We will ask NetLibrary to run some reports to help make appropriate decisions.

 Listing vendors on a web site that offer discounts to TexShare member libraries was tabled (Agenda item 8). Some members thought putting a list of vendors on the web would be helpful. Others thought this represented advertisement of the vendors and implied a TexShare recommendation. No decision was made, and the question may be considered at a later time. It was the general consensus that we had more important issues to address at this time.

Which databases to keep was the major decision of the day

EIWG decided to use four criteria in making the final decisions:

  • The results of a user survey (see below)
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  • Statistics on database use
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  • Best Value
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  • The recommendations of EIWG regarding balance, vendor reliability, percent of full-text documents and overlap of journal coverage

The Survey of Members

  • One survey will be accepted from each TexShare member library
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  • It will list every database, including subsets of databases. Subsets will be shown as "included with" the subscription for which we are charged
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  • An asterisk will mark the databases subscribed by the Texas Library Connection
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  • Members will be asked to rank their top choices from 1-10, with 1 being highest
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  • OCLC Base will be shown as a single item for purchase
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  • The name of the institution is a required field
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  • The name and contact information of the person completing the survey is a required field
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  • The tier of the institution (as reflected in the cost avoidance schedule) is a required field. Explanation will be on the survey. There is one addition to the tiers - one for medical libraries. Currently medical schools are included in the academic tiers. We want to be able to sort the medical school surveys separately
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  • The survey will be put on the web
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  • It will be available for a minimum of two weeks (14 days)

Information shared at the meeting

Beverly Shirley talked about the sources of the funds in the budget. She briefly discussed the possibility of a small fee to participate in the databases. Based on the results of a survey that was sent to a sampling of libraries, it may be possible to raise $500,000 in fees. A decision regarding fees has not been made. The survey was exploratory only.

Peggy Rudd talked about ZLOT. The RFP for the resource discovery software is out. $350,000 is available to pay the successful vendor. In response to a question about whether that money could be diverted to pay for databases, Rudd said that while it is not yet committed, she thinks we should continue this part of ZLOT. The money must be used during the current year.

Todd Peters provided statistics for ebook usage.

Bob Gaines brought a survey results that he did with involving libraries that have applied to use TSLAC's Gateway to access the databases.

Published Agenda for the Meeting

1. Budget

A. EIWG member comments of the state budget cuts to their libraries

2. Review ways we can save money within the database program

A. Eliminate duplicate copies of ebooks (except the most heavily used)
B. Eliminate subsidized portion of OVID in TexSelect program
C. Develop methods for soliciting input from membership on potential cuts.

3. Discuss probable cuts to the program

A. Decide which databases must be kept; which can be let go
B. ebook statistics and possible purchases
1. Use carry funds for medical ebooks?
2. See item 2A above for this discussion
3. Review suggestions from patrons
4. Database use statistics (in light of possible cuts) http://www.texshare.edu/memberinfo/statistics/databasestats/Stats2003.htm

Lunch

4. Remote use statistics & Bob Gaines' study (Jay's report & Bob's report)

5. Update on ZLOT project (Beverly Shirley will review program & budget)

6. Legislative TIF news Break

Break

7. TDNet (implemented by U of H, Rice, Trinity, Stephen F. Austin)

8. Special offers from non-TexShare vendors

A. Pros/Cons
B. Review Beverley's suggestions

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